Tribal Takeover Of National Parks And Refuges said by PEER to be on a Fast Track

I can hardly believe this to be a real initiative, if only because the politics of any real push for this would be just devastating to the Democratic Party. Nevertheless PEER, Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, has issued this news release.

As a side note, does anyone know about this controversy over the National Bison Range — the Indians versus the federal government? I read some headlines, but I didn’t get around to reading the story.

Update 11-9: This story from a Montana TV station gives a somewhat different view of the hearing. Proposed bill that would effect management of National Bison Range debated.

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Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility
For Immediate Release: November 6, 2007
Contact: Carol Goldberg (202) 265-7337

TRIBAL TAKEOVER OF NATIONAL PARKS AND REFUGES ON FAST TRACK — Legislation Would Set “Targets” for Transferring Jobs and Funds to Tribal Control

Washington, DC — This week, Congress will consider legislation that directs the Interior Department to turn over many national parks, wildlife refuges and other operations to tribal governments under virtually permanent funding agreements, according to Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). National parks such as Redwood, Glacier, Voyageurs, Olympic and the Cape Cod National Seashore are among the 57 park units in 19 states listed as eligible for tribal operation, as are 19 refuges in 8 states, including all of the Alaska National Wildlife Refuges and the National Bison Range in Montana.

This Thursday, November 8th, HR 3994 by Representative David Boren (D-OK) is slated for hearing before the full House Natural Resources Committee, just nine days after it was introduced. The committee is chaired by Rep. Nick Rahall (D-WV), the bill’s lead co-sponsor. Read the rest of this entry »